PICKENS Co., – After a year and a half of construction, the new Pickens county jail is set to open at the end of June.
For Sheriff Rick Clark, the project has been a career goal of his since he was elected in 2013.
“It’s tremendous as to just how big it is compared to what we had,” he said as he walked through the hallways Friday, admiring the facility’s new kitchen.
According to Clark, the jail will hold up to 363 inmates and includes several pods for them to gather throughout the day and cells for them to sleep in.
In one corridor, the Sheriff pointed to a room that he said will be dedicated to helping those with mental and behavioral heath concerns, as well a space used for church services and for inmates to eventually work to get their GED.
“It’s going to be a great beginning when we get in,” he said. “We think this room is going to be where our best work comes out of as far as helping the community rebuild and we think we can do a lot of good things here.”
The $25 million dollar facility replaces the Pickens county detention center. and the stockade, which he added are currently more than 50 years old.
“This is very crucial to Pickens county, our detention officers, our deputies, and of course our citizens are our number one concern.”
The stockade has been plagued with problems over the years as inmates escaped and ran loose through nearby neighborhoods.
“This is going to cut down on our lawsuits and our liability that we have, and I think it’s just a win-win for everybody,” he said. “I’ll sleep a lot better when this jail is up and running.”
Pickens County is also looking to hire 14 new detention officers for the new facility
For more information about the position, click here.